Opera Submits its iPhone Web Browser to Apple’s App Store

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Opera on the iPhoneThis could be interesting. Opera has completed their new version of Opera Mini for the Apple iPhone (and the imminent iPad). It’s been submitted to Apple for inclusion in their App Store and could be available within days. Or perhaps not.Opera on the iPhoneOpera Mini 5 for the iPhone looks almost identical to their browser on the Android, Symbian and Nokia platforms. It offers a range of features normally found in desktop browsers such as tabs, search, speed dial, and bookmark synchronization.The browser is also fast. Perhaps the best news for iPhone users is Opera Turbo; a facility which uses Opera proxy servers to deliver highly-compressed pages and images and increase download speeds. In Opera’s publicity video below, they demonstrate 5 pages loading in the same time it takes the iPhone’s native Safari browser to download just one.Unfortunately, the the new browser still won’t provide Flash on Apple’s device but, if I were Adobe, I’d hastily arrange arrange a few exploratory meetings with the Opera development team.The big question is: will Apple permit the Opera browser in its App Store? Opera competes directly against the Safari browser and Apple could argue that it doesn’t offer a seamless iPhone-like interface. They have rejected applications for more arcane reasons.I hope Apple doesn’t obstruct healthy competition and accepts the browser on their device. They certainly don’t want to incur the wrath of Opera users!

Would you use Opera on the iPhone? Is Safari good enough? Will Apple accept the browser? Or has Opera’s development effort been in vain?Place your bets now…

Craig BucklerCraig Buckler
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Craig is a freelance UK web consultant who built his first page for IE2.0 in 1995. Since that time he's been advocating standards, accessibility, and best-practice HTML5 techniques. He's created enterprise specifications, websites and online applications for companies and organisations including the UK Parliament, the European Parliament, the Department of Energy & Climate Change, Microsoft, and more. He's written more than 1,000 articles for SitePoint and you can find him @craigbuckler.

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